Call No Man Father (Revisited)


Hi everybody I just have a question,why if the bible says not to call any man father on earth but your Father in heaven, why do you guys call the preist father its against Gods word!:smiley:


Hahaha! I know the answer to that one.

Here: when you read the Bible you must never leave your common sense and common wisdom, meaning: don’t understand what you read literally if it is going to make your life and home dysfunctional at most or absurd at least; then you must interpret what you read so as to concord with and add to the importance of the top priorities in your Catholic faith.

The summit one is this: Love the Lord thy God with thy whole heart, thy whole mind, and thy whole body, and thy neighbor as thyself; then also take very serious note of the Ten Commandments.

So, on the basis of the above rules of interpretation, when Jesus says not to call anyone father, because there is only one in heaven, God; it can’t mean that you are not going to call your dad at home father, that would make your home life ridiculous and go against the 4th Commandment, Honor thy father and thy mother, rendering your family and home dysfunctional.

So, what is Jesus commanding? Simple: you are to take your father as someone in authority over you to help you get to the Father in Heaven.

But why call the priest father? For the same reason, because he has been constituted an authority over you to bring you to the Father in Heaven.


For a defector Catholic, what do you think about my answer to your conundrum?

Try another one?



Moved from FTM&G to Apologetics.


“For I became your FATHER in Christ Jesus through the Gospel,” 1 Corinthians 4:15.

Did Paul “go against God’s word” when he called himself “Father” to fellow Christians?

No, and neither do we. We do not “go against God’s word.” We simply understand it differently than you do. You refer to your biological father as your “father,” right? Does that mean you are “going against God’s word?” No, of course not. Jesus told us to call no man father or teacher in the sense that God is the source of all fatherhood and all teaching and all authority.


Jesus was talking about the Pharasis who were sitting in the seat of Moses and acting like they themselves were God and that all authority and teaching came from them, not from God the Father. Jesus also tells us to call no man teacher as well. His point was, the Pharasis were acting like they were the authority and source of knowledge, and that men should serve them. And that because He came from God the Father, He was the authority and source of knowledge. And that He was there to serve the Father, not the other way around. Jesus was not forbidding anyone from using words, especially father or teacher or rabbi.

Priests that we call ‘father’ are servants of the Lord and are there to serve the people of the church. Not to be served by the people. Not as the source of authority and knowledge. And if you asked any of them, they would tell you that.

Priests are married to the church, and as such they look upon the memebers of the church as their children. Father Corapi has a great take on this.

And finally, having heard this, and other, tired old protestant accusations from many anti-catholics looking to suprise or ‘trip up’ catholics, I gotta say it’s getting old. When are they going to come up with some new ‘accusations’? And do you really think that after 2000 years, after compiling the bible and giving it to the world, these are things the church hasn’t addressed? Come on.


Lots of people seem astonished to hear that Catholics even HAVE a Biblical answer to what they assume are “Biblical” arguments against Catholicism. They’ve just never been shown that the Bible supports the Catholic faith rather than man-made anti-Catholic traditions. That’s why the first thing I do when I hear this old saw is to show that St Paul called himself “Father” in 1 Corinthians 4:15.


So if we agree to call priests something else you’ll become a Catholic, right?



Before Anything, I want to say welcome to the forums. Hopefully you will stick around and see what the Church has to say.

There are a great variety of Catholics on here. Some are quick to… bite, others are patient, and only post every so often. Some respond in love, some, sadly, respond in vitriol.

The moderators here are very good at keeping things level. If you feel that anyone is belittling, or making derogatory comments towards you, report it to the moderators. If you look at the history of who’s banned, they will ban Catholics just as quickly as non-catholics

All we ask is that you are charitable. (Not saying you haven’t)

If something the church teaches bothers you. Don’t start a thread like “Why do you catholics worship statues, the bible clearly says you are wrong!”

Ask it like “It is my understanding that Catholics worship statues. I have always been taught that this is wrong. Is it true that catholics do this?”

Same meaning is put across, but one is charitable, one is not…

In Any case, I hope you have a fruitful stay here…

May the Lord Jesus Christ bless you richly

In Christ


The best answer I found to this question comes from J. Mueller in his book Practical Discipleship.
It is the role of the Priest (Presbyter) to nourish the community of faith with the Word of God in the liturgy and to administer the Sacraments on behalf of the people. In other words, we are family. The priest is called “Father” because of the role that he plays.

In a monastery, the Abbot is responsible not only for the spiritual needs of the community but for the material and physical needs as well. Abbot comes from “Abba.” Brothers must have the faith of a child. This requires a great deal of humility. The minimum age of entry is now 25. These men know how to take care of themselves. They help take care of one another.


Check out Luke’s parable of the “prodigal son”–Luke 15:11 ff.:

Jesus, in telling the story, has the son call his father “Father” at least three times…

So, Jesus calls a man “Father” several times in telling the story of the prodigal son…

Unless it was “Dude” in the original Aramaic…:smiley:



The best answer I found comes from “The Catholic Commentary on Holy Scripture” by the editorial committee of Orchard, Sutcliffe, Fuller & Russell, #'s 656b & 714c.

#656b: This was made clear by our Lord Himself on more than one occassion. There were indeed to be to be among his followers some who should be ‘greater’ than others, or ‘first’ or ‘leaders’, Matthew 20:26-27; Mark 10:43-44; Luke 22:26, but that should not on this account 'lord it over the rest, as did those among the Gentiles who wielded power . . . .

So too, from their very context, must be explained such passages as Matthew 23:8 ff: it is not the bearing of this or that title which our Lord forbids his Apostles ( ‘Rabbi’, ‘Father’, ‘Teacher’ ), it is the arrogance with which the Scribes and Pharisees preened themselves, that he here pillories. Fathers and teachers they must be: but the greater they are as such, the more thoroughly must they become the servants of all.


----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Do not be afraid, speak out, and refuse to be silenced; I am with thee, and none shall come to do thee harm; I have a great following in this city (Acts 18: 9-10)


Because alcohol is EVIL :rolleyes:


Within a monastery, the brothers vow of obedience means to listen. Each brother is obedient to the abbot. The abbot in turn is obedient to each of the brothers.


I like the way you think.:wink: I never understood that either. I guess because no one ever calls them out on the obvious contradictions. The CC is a huge target and I guess it makes some feel better about what they believe when they criticize what others believe. (generalization only)

You will never get a real answer from the OP because there is no answer. They want you to be literal about calling no man father but wont hold their own belief the the same standard.:hmmm:


(Edited)I find the “call no man ‘father’” argument so specious.

A passage of Scripture is taken out of context, recast in very literal terms, and used as a weapon against fellow Christians.

Meanwhile, the community to which the OP belongs sees nothing whatsoever wrong with altering Scripture by removing references to wine and replacing them with completely anachronistic references to juice from the pulpit.

Let’s concede for the moment that the Catholic Church ought not call priests “Father.” Let’s call them “Reverend” instead, as many Protestants do.

What precisely has changed? Has “the whore of Babylon” (to use a view of the Catholic Church popular among Pentecostals) suddenly become pleasing to our Protestant brethren?


1 post from Pentecostalboy and no further contact. Do I smell a Troll? Looks like your standard hit and run attack.


Well if it smells and sounds and looks like a duck, it must be a duck…:wink:


Then why did Jesus turn water into wine for a wedding party which lasted a week??


(Edited) Lots of folks drop off threads for a little while due to other demands on their time. Some days I’m active, some I’m swamped, and I presume many folks post a question, wait for answers to accrue, then read a bunch at once.

The threads hopefully wind up being informative for folks perusing.

Like it or not, the reason the “call no man father” thread keeps reappearing is because there are a LOT of folks who believe this to be the smoking gun of anti-Catholicism.


Good point—I summarized this for my (then-) Pentecostal fiancee (now wife) by saying, “It’s tough to be a Prohibitionist when Christ is your bartender.”

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